My partner and I stayed for 8 days over the Christmas break. This is my second visit to an Excellence property (my partner's 4th). Overall, this was an amazing experience and we would not hesitate to return.
So - with that said - I will outline a few of the areas that were worth noting (either good or bad). But, please - if you are reading this review, NOTHING was so bad as to even consider another resort. The Excellence was excellent. Go!
Overall, the hotel is a little older than the other resorts - and there is a little wear here and there. However, the company is steadily upgrading the rooms. We had a room with the window in the shower (a nice and romantic feature) but our friends did not have a renovated room - so just beware that not all rooms are equal at this point (but all equally nice).
A small complaint was that there were few pillows for sleeping. During the day the bed is *covered* in display pillows - but for actual sleeping - only three thin pillows (of which I had to give the second pillow to my partner). If you like extra pillows - be prepared to ask!
The grounds are spectacular and very well maintained. Yes, the ocean is *very* rough and the lifeguards do not want you to venture too far out in the water. That being said - the beach and the ocean are the cleanest I have ever experienced. In Cancun you will have sea-grass on the shore - not so in Punta Cana - it was a *very* beautiful beach and we had no trouble finding loungers.
As for the food - we were happy with all the food choices. We ate at all the restaurants and the food was consistently very good. The service however was a little spotty. In Cancun, *all* the staff are friendly and nice - in Punta Cana, it was a little more mixed. That being said - there were absolutely some standouts (in a good way). Overall, I would say the service is a little less pleasant than at the Excellence in Cancun - but that is a very high standard to maintain.
I did want to compliment the resort on a job well done on New Years Eve. WHAT.A.PARTY. We had an absolute blast! The hotel even had fireworks at midnight - wow.
Overall - we had a terrific trip.
A few things to note if you decide to visit. Firstly, the hotel is a bit of a ways away from the airport - so expect a long drive (1 hour) each way. We anticipated this - so it wasn't an issue for us, but you might want to get a bottle of water at the airport before you leave (or use the washroom) as it is a long drive.
Secondly - there are vendors on the beach. Generally, they leave you alone once you listen to them the first time - but it can get a little annoying when you just want to chill. Not much the hotel can do about it though...
Finally - it is an 'adults only' resort - so expect a few topless women, or thong-clad bikini sunbathers (men and women). It didn't bother us any - but some of guests seemed surprised/upset.
Overall - we would *highly* recommend returning to the Excellence!
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- This quaint, colonial-style resort is the ideal destination for couples seeking secluded romantic getaways. Nestled among palms on a perfect white-sand beach on a remote stretch of Punta Cana's Caribbean shoreline, Excellence Punta Cana provides the perfect All-Inclusive playground for adults only and is also home to a world-class spa, state-of-the-art fitness center and an exceptional range of activities and services. ... more less
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- Also Known As:
- Secrets Excellence Punta Cana
- Excellence Resort Punta Cana
- Excellence Punta Cana Resort
- Secrets Punta Cana
- Excellence Punta Cana Dominican Republic
- Excellence Dominican Republic
- Punta Cana Excellence Hotel
- Excellence Punta Cana Hotel
- Secret Excellence Resort Punta Cana
- Punta Cana Secrets Excellence